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[A-Bomb Blast Effects]

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[A-Bomb Blast Effects]

Published 1952
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Footage from an atomic bomb test - probably Operation Tumbler-Snapper? The same footage also appears in "Operation A-Bomb (1953)".

Run time 0:08:18
Audio/Visual silent, color


Reviewer: RoboReview - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 8, 2015
Subject: The holocaust, brought to you by the War Department
I find it interesting that dummy soldiers and worn-out tanks and other vehicles apparently were placed within the blast zone. Was the use of nukes in a battlefield setting contemplated?
Reviewer: MusicArchiveFreak - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 29, 2013
Subject: Atom Bomb - Up Close & Personal
Impressive film to say the least. The part during the actual explosion are definitely as close as it gets. It is unfortunate war plays such a major role in the big picture. Not the best of thoughts, but what if WW2 didn't happen 70+ years ago? The 60 million who perished, and their future pyramid of offspring would have definitely been a strain on the current global population?
Reviewer: enola - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 17, 2010
Subject: Sadly Inevitable
Sooner or later, some nation was going to develop The Bomb. Germany had its heavy-water research, and quite possibly Japan had been able to manufacture and explode an atomic bomb ( - also shown on the History Channel).

The genie is out of the bottle. The trick now is to learn how to live with one another, which might be tough given the recent proliferation of radical terrorism.

As others have said, this is interesting yet frightening footage. We were so ignorant back then...
Reviewer: gl1200phil - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 17, 2010
Subject: Will we learn ???
Scariest thing I ever heard was when dubya said, "I want new-cue-lur bombs at my disposal!" While he's thinking, "Hoooo eeee, will that give me political capital or what if I blowed one of them suckers off??" I'll even bet ma will let me carve the turkey come Thanksgivin', and I don't mean one of them plastic ones neither! That was so cool...The admiral let be steer dat destroyer and gave me that cool hat! I bet daddy ain't got a hat like that!"

When I was in 6th or 7th grade, mid 60s, we saw a film, taken from what was thought to be ground zero, where the A bomb went off, either Nagasaki or Hiroshima. I believe they said it was only a day or two after it happened. I'm sure many others have seen it too. The cameraman did a 360 w/ the camera from that point. Nothing but absolute devastation. Must of been no standing walls or anything for a mile or farther, away. They showed away from the epicenter, where there were walls still standing, and you could vaguely see images that looked kind of like shadows of people on the standing walls. That was all that was left of some of the poor victims, who were instantly vaporised. Those were the lucky ones. They showed some of those poor victims, their skin was black from the radiation burns, and was just falling right off their bodies. Those poor people would be dead in just hours.

PEACE! an old hippie seattle

Reviewer: 10hertz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 10, 2009
Subject: 3...2...1...?
It's too bad we never learn from our mistakes.
Reviewer: Eight Bit Bandit - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 4, 2008
Subject: Surreal
I think the strangest part - aside from the fact that these are people who are standing in front of a live atomic bomb test - are all the "Don't Talk" signs. Spooky.
Reviewer: Venckman - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - August 15, 2005
Subject: Silence is golden.
This clip lacks a soundtrack, and I think it's a good thing. Without sound, we're left to ponder the images, and they speak loudly enough. Chilling and haunting.
Reviewer: nVIR - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - May 27, 2004
Subject: incredible
those poor soldiers, taking the blast themselves...
Reviewer: Sarte - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 26, 2004
Subject: Disturbing, haunting, and very chilling.
This silent color film depicts an atomic bomb test somewhere in a desert area. The film is very scratchy, but the images are moving and affecting.

Soldiers ducking to shield their eyes from the blast and standing up, only to be knocked down by the shockwave.

The soldiers advance to the bombed-out area and a montage of clips shows a comparison of objects before and after the bomb.

This film shows the horrors of the atomic bomb, and is an excellent record of an event that most people my age have not experienced(myself included) in this day and age, namely; a above-ground nuclear test.
Highly reccomended.
Reviewer: DresdenGermany - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - April 1, 2004
Subject: Snapper Dog
the explosion in this film is an airdropped
19 kt nuclear device. the test explosion was part of operation Snapper and was called dog. in conjunction with the dog shot, the desert rock IV exercise was conducted (aprox. 8000 DoD participants). I am sure, this is not the Buster Charlie test, because during Buster Charlie no troop maneuvers were conducted. The first desert rock exercise was conducted during Buster-Jangle Dog, an airdrop from a B-50 with a yield of 21 kt.
Reviewer: Steve Nordby - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - January 30, 2004
Subject: Where did this film come from?
Thanks to film_builder2 for the reference link. Don't understand your 1 star rating though.

For anyone interested, here's another good source of info and pictures of nuclear tests:

There is also a great feature length documentary: "Trinity and Beyond: The Atomic Bomb Movie"

Hard to say exactly which test this was - they were shootin 'em off like firecrackers - and ground troops were invovlved in both Buster Jangle and Upshot Knothole. From the site I refered to: Upshot Knothole "exposed exercise personnel to nuclear tests, and thus radiation, more aggressively than previous ones. Observation by troop formations were conducted at what was calculated to be the minimum safe separation distance, with many personnel being exposed to multiple tests."

The cannon shot on Upshot Knothole was 14KT. Too bad this film is so scratched.
Reviewer: film_builder2 - favorite - January 29, 2004
Subject: Buster-Jangle: Charlie
I've been trying to figure out which atomic bomb test this is for awhile, due to the fact that the footage is so moving.

The first explosion in the film appears to be Buster-Jangle: Charlie; October 30, 1951. 14 kilotons. An airdrop from a B-50 bomber (hence the contrail in the film).

Here's my reference, in case someone wants to compare the pictures. The picture in the pdf file is _not_ from ground level.
Reviewer: The Sound Hound - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - October 3, 2003
Subject: About this film
In my history class last year, my teacher showed us a video called Atomic Cafe that was film after film of atomic tests and military briefings on nukes and so on and so forth. I am about 98% sure this film was one of the ones in Atomic Cafe, and if I'm right here's the scenario: The US West Coast has been invaded by the Soviets (the example I believe was San Francisco). The plan was to nuke the Soviets' landing point, and then send soldiers in to clean up (hence the soldiers marching towards the mushroom cloud). The dummies and obsolete tanks were planted not only to see how the Soviets would fare against an atomic blast, but also to see how best to protect our troops if ever in a battlefield situation where an atomic blast might occur nearby.
Reviewer: Spuzz - favoritefavoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - July 28, 2003
Subject: A bomb to the highest degree
THis amazing footage, part of an RKO Pathe fim, features some astonishing footage of soldiers doing their duty and watching the A bomb go off in the desert wearing very little protection. I just loved it how they looked up after the bomb hit, and getting hit by the aftershock.. BAM! After that, they proceed to walk up towards the bomb target, gawking. The film then cuts to what appeards to be some before and after shots of miltary equiment and dummies set up to see the effects before and after the bomb. So we see tanks, heavy artillery and machine guns just wasted. It would've been interesting to see the before and after effects, say 10-15 years of the soldiers participating in this, but never mind. A MUST see on this site!
Reviewer: Christine Hennig - favoritefavoritefavoritefavorite - June 7, 2003
Subject: A-Bomb Blast Effects
This is a silent fragment of a color military film of an early atom bomb test. Even without the soundtrack, it's pretty interesting, as it is filled with fascinating images and it gives a real feel of what such tests were like to the soldiers who had to endure them. Some arresting images include several signs promoting secrecy (such as ÂIf You Wouldn't Tell Stalin, Don't Tell Anyone Else"ÂÂI want these for the Film Ephemera Museum of Quirky Devices), GIs prematurely emerging from their foxholes only to be surprised by the bomb's aftershocks, comparison footage of war materials and dummy soldiers before and after the blast, and the final uninterrupted footage of the blast itself, which makes the camera shake and almost burns out the film with the intenisty of its light. Again, it's too bad the soundtrack is missing, but this is a great historical document anyway and it would make wonderful footage for documentary filmmakers.
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: N/A. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: ****.
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